8 Tips when Pre-planning a Funeral in the Philippines
Pre-planning a funeral in the Philippines can be overwhelming, from choosing where you’d like to be buried given the variety of memorial lots available, to deciding how long the wake would last. Without a plan, your family will be saddled with expensive costs. Is your family financially prepared to handle all the expenses the unfortunate happens?
Thinking about it may be scary, but let’s face it – death is inevitable! Preparing for it is probably one of the best things you can do for the loved ones you’ll be leaving behind. Pre-planning relieves the family of the burden of arranging your funeral. It’s also practical to be financially prepared, as expenses associated with death could be unbearable.
Below are a few tips in pre-planning a funeral in the Philippine setting along with the financial cost breakdown:
- Assign point persons. Getting yourself insured is one of the wisest decisions you can make during your lifetime. You are not only saving your loved ones from the cost; you are also giving them peace of mind. The insurance will need a beneficiary, and this can also be the person in charge of delegating the tasks associated with the funeral. This ensures the smooth flow of the activities during the funeral service.
- Decide between a casket or an urn. Most memorial or pre-need life plans come with a free casket and the liberty to choose the kind you’d like to have. They also have a free urn in their packages should you wish to be cremated. That’s a huge saving right there as the simplest type of coffin may cost Php 8,000 while those with elaborated designs may set you back hundreds of thousands to millions. Similar to coffins, the price of urns depends on the materials used. A simple urn may fetch Php 2,500 while those made of porcelain can range between Php25,000 to Php50,000.
- Buy a memorial lot. Depending on the type and the choice of cemetery, memorial lots of about five square meters in size may cost Php60,000 to hundreds of thousands. You’ll need to prepare millions if you want a mausoleum type. A more affordable option is the apartment-style niche in public cemeteries that can go as low as Php1,000.
- Know the cost of transportation services.While it’s customary for Filipinos to walk from church to the cemetery, you may still need to take distance into account. A hearse will be provided by the funeral service but renting additional vehicles may be deemed necessary for the guests. Expect to cash out Php1,000 to Php3,000 per vehicle rented.
- Plan for food and refreshments. The funeral service in the Philippines is 24/7, so make sure food and drinks are readily available for guests who may come anytime. Some families prefer to hire catering services, while others are content to serve snacks and juices. Expect to shell out Php 3,000 to Php30,000 for food and refreshments, depending on the type of food, the number of guests and the length of the viewing service.
- Decide on the length of the viewing service. Decide how long you’d like the wake to be. The viewing service in the Philippines usually lasts three days, but it can take longer when someone in the family resides abroad. Note that the length of the viewing service could easily add to the total funeral service cost. A simple viewing arrangement may cost Php 15,000 while a grandiose one can cost hundreds of thousands.
- Ask around for burial or cremation services. Burial service packages may range from Php5,000 to Php25,000. Basic inclusions are security support, transportation, music, and prayer services. Cremation, on the other hand, may cost between P10,000 to Php20,000.
- Choose flowers. The cost of flower arrangement depends on your taste. You can get a simple bouquet for a couple of hundreds, but for a more elaborate arrangement, expect to pay around Php10,000 to P50,000.
Though pre-planning a funeral is not that popular in the Philippines just yet, this doesn’t mean you should wait unprepared for the inevitable. As early as now, you can set aside the funds for the funeral services, look for a memorial lot or contact a life plan provider. Your action today will save your family from being overwhelmed when the time comes for you to say goodbye.